Dalian Atkinson killing: officer was kept on despite gross misconduct

The police officer convicted of the manslaughter of Dalian Atkinson had been previously found by a police disciplinary hearing to have committed gross misconduct but was allowed to remain an officer and given a stun gun, it has been revealed.

Dalian Atkinson
Dalian Atkinson. Photograph: Karen Wright/AP

PC Benjamin Monk was convicted of the manslaughter of Atkinson last week after firing a stun gun into him for 33 seconds, and then kicking him twice in the head after a clash in August 2016.

On Monday at Birmingham crown court a sentencing hearing was told that Monk had two criminal cautions for drunkenness and theft before he joined the police but that they had not been disclosed when he applied to be an officer.

The prosecutor, Alexandra Healy QC, told the court Monk had applied to join the police in 2001. He was cautioned for theft in 1997 while an employee at a Woolworths store. In 1999, Healy told the court, Monk was cautioned after he was found drunk. Neither was disclosed and Monk became an officer with the West Mercia force.

In 2010 Monk went through another vetting process, Healy told the court, and the criminal cautions were disclosed. Monk faced a police disciplinary hearing charged with gross misconduct, which can lead to dismissal. He was found guilty of the disciplinary charge, which amounted to “discreditable conduct”, Healy told the court.

Instead of being dismissed Monk was given a final written warning.

The hearing heard that Monk had no criminal convictions.

Judge Melbourne Inman QC is listening to prosecution and defence arguments about the length of sentence Monk should face after he killed Atkinson in Telford, Shropshire.

The crown has suggested a starting point of 12 years.


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